IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

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MichaelChangGummelt
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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by MichaelChangGummelt » Fri May 17, 2013 9:19 am

Captain's Log
I'd also love to see a Captain's Log. A narrative recap of the mission that just happened. Like:

Captain's Log
Captain Phineas T. Bogg
Astrodate 9.5.21-0

"The USS Awesomesauce encountered a hostile race of beings known as the Antarians in orbit around Mercury. They had attacked a merchant vessel and had begun *eating* the crew! I attempted to negotiate with them, but they proved to be a single-minded and unremittingly hostile species. We defeated them, but at great cost. Recruit Joe Schmoe was killed in action. I fear this has set our two worlds at war inexorably."

What's cool about that is that it gives:
1) More of a sense of narrative, more immersion in the game/story
2) Can be used to pass narrative time between missions (so one thing doesn't have to lead directly into the next)
3) Is interactive (if you chose to fire first and not try to negotiate, the log would reflect that - if nobody died, it would reflect that, etc. And, of course, it uses your Captain's look and name, your ship's look and name.)
4) Serves as a nice recap if you want to look back on your missions and read the story of your adventure.
5) Would help you remember where you left off if you're coming back to the game after a few days.
6) Lets you see your Captain more and feel more attached to them as your avatar.
7) Is very cheap - just text! :)

As it is, the Captain largely feels like just another crewmember - primarily, just a redshirt. I'd like it if s/he could do other things that maybe regular crew can't. Like maybe if he's in a specialty room, he boosts the recharge rate & token production of the room while he's in there (he can do anything) and earns skill points in those areas while he does that. And when he's on the bridge, maybe he can do certain actions. In fact, the Bridge and Engine room are two extremely crucial rooms on a ship, but I often leave them empty in battle, which feels a bit wrong. Especially the Bridge. Don't get me wrong, I like sending guys around the ship to fight and I like the idea of the Captain personally fending off enemies, I just wish I could choose to leave him on the Bridge and have him do something effective while there. Obviously, this would be something with ship-to-ship combat. Probably something with tactical planning like flanking, cloaking, evasive maneuvers, bluffs and power/shielding distribution? Not sure there, I'd just like the Captain to seem more important/useful than other crew members.

Stats
I'd also love to see a Stats page so you can see things like how many aliens you've dispatched (could break it down by type if you want), how many and which crew have died, how much damage your ship has taken, your TAC/SCI/ENG crew distribution (maybe by skill point) to see what "kind" of crew you have, etc, etc.
Michael Chang Gummelt
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XidanePayne
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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by XidanePayne » Fri May 17, 2013 2:50 pm

I thought about something supersimple, but could be a welcome aspect in the daily life of a star commander...

When we've got the token chest or menu side-bar up, the game is paused and we have to push the red X-button or the menu button to return to the game. Maybe we could add a feature to tap anywhere on an empty area and return to the game. On the token chest screen, there are alot of empty areas between the "Token Chest" and the token section. Tap anywhere and return to the game, easy peazy! :lol:

Same when the menu side-bar is up. About 75% of the screen is empty area we could tap on to return to the game.

Had something else in mind, will update as soon as i figure out....

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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by Travis Knight » Fri May 17, 2013 4:32 pm

I wouldn't want a captain's log, extended or otherwise, to replace the crew commenting on the situation, but having it pop up as a kind of unfolding journal in the pause menu would be cool for sure.

I also like some of the minor tweaks mentioned here--like shuffling tokens and manipulating alpha. Several times I've lost crew to the right side of the Bridge because of how big the mods are.

The "return all," feature is nice, but I often leave the bridge and armor guys hanging in the halls. I'm fine without it. A "seek repairs" would be better, in my opinion.

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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by Decimus » Fri May 17, 2013 7:33 pm

I would have to suggest two major UX/UI changes that would seriously impact the flow of gameplay, and then a handful of utility changes.

First major change is the ability to have an 'active pause', a la KOTOR, where you can pause the game, and then continue to issue orders to your crew even while the game doesn't happen to be running. This is, of course, purely a suggestion; adding this would change the way the game plays significantly, by allowing people to take a moment to think about exactly how they wanted to use their crew members, and it would remove a lot of the frantic, hectic mayhem from the last five levels or so of the game. I personally found it was nearly impossible to keep up with ordering my crew about to meet the swarms of invaders rolling over my ship.

The second major change would be making it much more obvious to the player when an attack was incoming, via the edges of the screen flashing red. At the moment, it's easy to overlook, especially with the sound off and the screen focused on a single area of the ship.

Minor changes that would help greatly: The ability to click on the OUTER parts of a room and select it; IE, the turret of a weapon itself, or bits that extend over the corners or of the room. As it is, you can't select a room without clicking on the floor, which can be hard to do without also hitting a unit.

The ability to see at a glance what weapon/dodge/shield tokens you have built, right there on the main screen, directly on top of/next to you the firing button, without going into the token chest.

The ability to deselect a selected room/unit by clicking on an area outside the ship.

A 'reset all units' button that would return everyone to their duty stations immediately, without having to go in and press each and every individual crew member's reset button.

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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by MichaelChangGummelt » Sat May 18, 2013 10:56 pm

Two minor annoyances, not playability-affecting, but they irk me:

1) Please don't call solar systems "galaxies". In a sci-fi game, that's just inexcusable! When you show me 3 locations in the same galaxy on a map and they're all in the same galaxy, those are not different galaxies, those are different solar systems. When you go to those locations, you see a single star and lots of planets. That's a solar system. Just replace references in dialogue to "galaxy" with "system" ("Tarsus Galaxy" becomes "Tarsus System").

2) When crew reports to me about something (detecting a ship, getting a hail, etc.), I'd love it if they were at least of the right division - plays more into the idea that the crew really does do their specific duties, like Star Trek. If it's detect something on scanners, make it a blue guy. If it's something about their weapons charging up, make it a red guy. If I'm being hailed, make it someone assigned to the bridge maybe? Just little things like that make me believe more that my crew members are unique individuals with personalities and specific duties and makes me more attached to them. Which makes me more invested in them and makes me more likely to try to protect them in combat.
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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by TheGreatZog » Sun May 19, 2013 8:22 am

I also like the idea of a narrative record.

Engine rooms and the bridge should give bonuses that reflect their functions. Engine rooms move the ship so if your engine room is working and manned then your ship would be able to take evasive maneuvers so enemy ship to ship shots are less effective either the shields last longer or you could put in a mini game to simulate avoiding fire. The bridge commands, controls, and organizes the rest of the ship so as long as the bridge is manned and running all rooms on the ship get bonuses in effectiveness and or recharge rates. Just like the other rooms the more people assigned the larger the bonus.

It would be nice if you could do and alien autopsy to make red shirts more effective against different races.

I like the idea of making the captain really stand out from the rest of the crew either as an actual character and/or by their ability to do something the rest of the crew can't. Examples: give bonus to whole room or personel within aoe, maybe allow him to have access to his assigned red blue and yellow skill no matter what room he is assigned to. so he could aid in shooting for a time even though he is a blue shirt or any other combo.

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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by Ace Smeghead » Sun May 19, 2013 3:41 pm

Without having read through the rest of the comments...

When I play I often wish there was a button on the detailed personnel screen for sending them back to their assigned room.
For instance:
I send the Laser Cannon crew into the hallway to help with boarders. When they are done I need to get the crew back to the weapon room, but there is a group of 6 re shirts standing there. If I click on one, there is a basic info bar at the top with their name and an icon to return to room, but I don't know which room.

I can select Details and it will show me their name and room assignment. I can page through the crew until I fins the Laser Cannon crew, but then I can't send them back. So I hit the red X and I am back looking at a group of 6 red shirts. If I remember what they looked like, I can, say, click on the pink haired human and send them back, otherwise I have to hunt for the correct name.

1. Add a return to room icon on the Details screen, or put a room assignment indication on the top bar near the crew name.


When all of the rooms on the ship are full, I can't figure out how to reassign someone. If I wanted to swap a bridge crew for engineering, there is no way that I found to un-assign a crew, or assign them to the hallway so that their shirt turns white and spot opens up in the room they were in. Right now I have to have someone die or just don't re-assign them with a full crew.

2. Add some kind of "un-assign" button or allow crew to be assigned to a full room, but not activate till someone leaves.


It would be nice to see a list of battle ammo without having to click on the token screen. The token screen can't be re-arranged, so quickly scanning it isn't intuitive. The rooms won't let you build more and tell you when they are out, that is nice, but when you only have one, but forget to build more...

3. Only during battle, have a row of small icons dropping vertically from the token chest button in the top left showing what battle related ammo (shield, jump, torpedo) is available. Even better if it also shows flashing or grayed out icons for those being currently built.

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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by Ace Smeghead » Sun May 19, 2013 9:13 pm

Something else I would like to see. After a battle, there are usually half a dozen crew running around the ship. It would be nice to have a [return all] button to send everyone back to their assigned rooms.

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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by rawli1981 » Mon May 20, 2013 2:52 am

Hi i wrote on the facebook page a week ago commending you on such a good game - you have created something that is fun - challenging but still has so much potential still.

I would like

To be able to teleport to the enemy ship - where you have the potential to 'loot' extra tokens.

Planetary landings - with a similar idea of looting/gathering extra tokens or crew members.

New weaponry - Rocket launchers - machine pistols - swords?

Airlocks? So when you are been invaded - you could lure the enemy through a room - which you can then lock and open up to space? (i like this one!! :-)...)

Group selection of troops? Maybe by double selecting the room that they are attached too?

An extra type of crew member - Green? That are specifically for defending the walkways?

Landmines (of somesort?) that could either freeze the enemy - or destroy them - or mind control them (possible alien equipment usage??)


Basically this game is great! And could be epic!

Peace out

Captain David Rawlinson
of the Ship El Diablo

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Re: IMPROVE IT: UI/UX Revisions

Post by MichaelChangGummelt » Mon May 20, 2013 12:53 pm

One more minor thing: whenever a crew member says something, it shows their character, but not their name. I'd like to see their name, too. It'd help me remember who is who and make me feel a little more attached to them as a unique person.

For the dialogue in general, it'd be nice if they used my name more often, too.
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